Monthly Archives: November 2013


Our Thanksgiving tradition has been to go to the Thanksgiving Parade in downtown Charlotte and then go straight to my mom’s house for lunch.  This year it was unusually cold, but we went to the parade anyway.  Faith loves to see the “princesses” which are actually beauty queens, Wilson likes the bands, and I love to go and do something that we don’t usually get to do.  We all win!  Well, except Faith, this year.  No beauty queens.  I found out later it is because there was a new sponsor for the parade and they don’t do beauty contests.  Faith was disappointed, but the rest of us had fun.  Luckily we brought a blanket to sit on and then wrap around us.  It was only 40 degrees outside.

After the parade we drove over to my mom’s house.  There are usually about 30 people there, most of which are my dad’s brothers and sisters and their families.  We even had some friends join and they just blended into the madness.  Everyone brings a dish so there is more food than we can all eat.  I should have taken a picture, but I didn’t.  You name, we ate it.

After a few hours I was talked out so I sat on the couch with Tom while Wilson and Miller napped.  It was very relaxing.  We were the last to leave mom’s house.  After the crowds cleared out we hung out and talked to Grandmama Pat for a while (my mom’s mom).  She now lives in town and it is great to see her so often.

After we got home I decided to head over to Old Navy because they were opening at 7:00 and you could enter to win $1 million dollars.  Abigail, my neighbor, went with me.  We were number 300 into the store.  It sounds like a lot of people but it wasn’t too bad, that is, until you wanted to check out!  The line wrapped around the store.  We decided that it wasn’t worth it, set down our stuff and left.  The lesson I learned:  If you go on Thanksgiving, walk straight to what you know that you want to buy, grab it, and head straight to the registers.  Live and learn.  Next year I will try again.

It was a wonderful Thanksgiving.  I am so blessed to have such a beautiful, loving and healthy family.  I am supported and loved by so many friends and family.  I am truly blessed and thanksful!

Here we are at the parade.


The Tree is Up

Believe it or not, but we put up the Christmas tree today.  Thanksgiving is late this year and we wanted to have time to enjoy it.  The kids were very excited.  Miller didn’t remember doing it last year, but he was into it this year.  First we set up a small tree in Faith’s room downstairs.  She decorated it quite nicely.

Then the big tree went up.  A few years ago Tom and I decided that putting up a real tree every year was too much hassle for us.  Anyone that knows us knows that we argue about everything.  A friend of ours told us that we would probably argue about the color of the gras, and I am sure that we have.  We are both leaders, first borns, and were married late in life, therefore, we both think we are right and have the best way to do things.  The fact that ‘opposites attract’ doesn’t help the situation either.  Over the years we have gotten better, but we know where are limits lie.  This led us to the decision to get an artificial tree.  We don’t have to argue about whether or not the tree is straight, who watered it last, or how to put the lights on.  It is all done for us.  Beautiful!  Having three children also led to the decision;  we have enough to worry about in life.  A tree should not be one of them!

Sooooo….Tom put the tree together while I played with the kids and organized the ornaments.  The kids had a great time in the giant tree box.  The ornaments went up next.  Of course, two were broken immediately.  This caused Faith to cry and Tom and I to argue about the best was to distribute the ornaments.  (See, we can argue about anything!)  Everything ended up working out.  I got Faith back into the game, Wilson helped Tom hand out the ornaments, and Miller put all his ornaments on the same branch.  When we got to the balls Miller began trying to kick and throw the round ornaments because they were “balls”.  His favorite.  Eventually he realized that they weren’t for throwing, but were for the tree.

In the end, we ended up with a beautiful tree that was perfectly decorated (although many of the ornaments were on the lower right portion of the tree).  It was a great family event.  After tree decorating we had a movie night with popcorn.  Fun! Fun!

Miller turns two!

My baby is two years old.  I can’t believe it.  I still think of him as a little baby sometimes.  Yesterday as I walked Wilson into preschool a mom was walking up with a four year old, a two year old and an infant.  I looked at her and said, “that was me two years ago.”  We spoke briefly and then parted.  After I got back into the car I started to cry.  I thought about how I was never going to be back in that place again.  I would never have a little baby strapped to my chest while to drug two toddlers along with me.  That phase of life was very difficult, but I loved it.  I loved having a little baby.  I love having my children young and with me.  It made me sad that I will never have a little baby tagging along with me anymore.  From here on they just get older and more independent.  There is a lot of good that comes along with that and I am already experiencing some serious benefits from having older kids, but it is sad to know that I won’t have young kids anymore.  So, I had my five minutes of sadness and reflection of the “good ole days” and then went on with my day and Miller’s birthday.

The afternoon was a bit crazy.  We went to get Wilson and Faith a haircut since I had cut it myself the last time, then to the Dollar Store to get Miller a small gift and some balloons, and finally we went home to bake a cake, pick up the house, and order pizza for dinner.  Since Miller is the third child, he didn’t get much of a birthday celebration.  Maybe he got the right amount and the other two got too much.  I don’t know.   He got the important things:  a present or two, a cake and some pizza, and what every two year old wants:  attention.

Of course I waited until the last minute to order the pizza so it had to be picked up at the place.  I called my mom and asked them to pick up the pizza which meant that they had to pay for it too.  We laughed because I asked them to come over, bring pizza, pay for it and bring my kid a small gift.  Tacky right?!?!  That’s what parents are for!

We ate pizza, had a “circle” cake (which Miller said he wanted), and enjoyed a good laugh around the dinner table.  Miller could even tell you how old he was by the end of the day.  “TWO!”  And yes, he had a mohawk.  Both of the boys did!  It was adorable.  They are looking more and more alike each day.

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Gluten free…again and still

As you know, Miller and I were gluten free when he was a baby.  This was due to his terrible gas problem and eczema on his face.  He began to eat wheat for about six months and ended up with large spots of eczema on his legs.  I took a picture but now that I have a new phone it is off in space somewhere and I can’t get it. The eczema spots were red and bigger than a quarter.

Faith has had a stuffy nose for years.  My cousin suggested that she may have a wheat intolerance.  Unfortunately, Faith loves wheat products.  She would eat them at every meal if allowed it.  After getting her tonsils and adenoids, out her nose was clear for a few months but then it was right back to being stuffy.  She couldn’t breathe out of her nose at all, especially at night.

A few months ago I decided that it was time for all of us to go “gluten free”.  Honestly, I feel better and am less hungry when I don’t eat wheat.   I started buying gluten free bread, pasta, mac n cheese, etc.  There are so many options out there for gluten free.  Trader Joe’s has the best selection at the best price. They even have awesome gluten free frozen waffles and pancakes.

“Has it made a difference?”,  you ask.

Yes!  Miller’s eczema was gone within a week or so.  He still has white spots where the eczema used to be on his legs.  The doctor said that it could take a year for those to go away while the skin heals.  Faith’s nose is still a little stuffy but not like it used to be.  It is the most stuffy at night, but she can at least breathe during the day now.  She also cheats the most and probably eats a little bit of wheat every few days.  I don’t know if that makes a big difference but it is very hard to keep her away from wheat at her age.

I did a little research to try to determine why there are so many wheat allergies today.  Not many people are celiac (which is an autoimmune problem).  Most just have a sensitivity to wheat, get eczema from it, or have digestive problems.  Wheat is not yet genetically modified, but it has been hybridized.  This means that they grow particular strains with desirable characteristics and then grow them more and more.  Wheat is now shorter, browner, and far higher yielding than it was 100 years ago.  Some say this is to blame, others say it isn’t.  I do not know why, but it sure is affecting our family.

For now, we will be gluten free.  Tom has even joined the band wagon with his paleo-diet that he is on for training reasons.  Wilson doesn’t eat much wheat, he is a meat lover so I don’t make him do it.

So far we are a healthier family without gluten and it shows.

Here is how they look now. White spots but no red ones.


Faiths parent teacher conference



Last week we met with Faith’s kindergarten teacher, Mrs. Butler, to discuss Faith’s progress so far this year.  It was a wonderful conference.  Mrs. Butler is the sweetest teacher.  She has been teaching at CDS for over fifteen years and taught elsewhere before CDS.  She is one of those teachers that can even correct a parent without anyone getting offended.  One afternoon at carpool, during the second week of school, she smiled real big and said, “Mom, it would be great if Faith could get to school earlier so that she could play with her friends before class starts.”  I smiled back and said, “Ok.  Sure.  I will do that.”  I almost replied, “Yes, Ma’am.”  She is very motherly and always smiling and I love her for it!

But, I digress…..

In the conference, Mrs. Butler had many nice things to say about Faith.  She said that Faith is a friend to all.  Faith doesn’t care who she is partnered with because she loves everyone in her class.   She also said that Faith doesn’t put the stress on herself to be perfect that she did at the beginning of school.  Faith has loosened up a little bit and is now enjoying school and it shows. She is even told to quiet down every once in a while…which is a good thing!

Here is her progress report for the year so far.  She needs to raise her hand more, work on her handwriting and pencil grip, and continue to practice her sight words.  Currently, Faith is using the “thumb wrap” method to hold her pencil instead of using two fingers to grip it.  We are having to do finger strengthening exercises so that she can hold it the right way.  Her fingers aren’t strong enough to write while holding the pencil the right so she is having to use her thumb to help her.    We practice every other day or so…probably not often enough.  20131117-072202.jpg


Here is what she is responsible for learning throughout her kindergarten year.  Check out the math!  It is very advanced for kindergarten.  I am amazed at what she is learning.  Covenant Day is a very academic school.  I love it!



Here is the “piece de resistance”.  Mrs. Butler personalized some goals for Faith for the year.  She took what she knows about Faith, her strengths and weaknesses, her personality, her fears, and made a list of how to encourage Faith to be herself and to challenge her to be better.  She also made sure that Faith continues to grow in her faith in the Lord.  I almost cried when I read it.  This is what we are paying for at Covenant Day.  We are paying for her to be in a loving Christian environment where she is cherished as a child of God and encouraged to be who God made her to be.  I feel so good every time I drop her off at school.   I know that she is where the Lord wants her to be.  I am so sure of it that I am willing to go back to work to keep her there.



I have a new favorite exercise class:  Zumba!  Sometimes it is called “cardio-dance”, but it is all the same thing.  It is so much fun!  I get to shake my bootie, listen to great music, and get a workout all at the same time.  I tried doing the classes a few years ago, but it never stuck.  I had a hard time going to a loud class and then picking up my loud kids from child watch.  I can now handle both.  For me, it is a class that I really enjoy.  Most of my day is dedicated to children and household chores, this is something that I like and I want to do.  I have decided that if there is something that I really enjoy in life then I need to do it!   It is my “Becca Time”.

Now, you may be thinking that Zumba is only for teenagers and girls in their twenties, but you are wrong!  There are women in the class from ages 15 – 75.  Yep!  There were two women in their seventies in the class shaking their booties and having a great time.  The classes are also packed. I get there early so that I can get a spot up front and so that I can see what the teacher is doing. Some of the ladies have been going for so many years that they all know the dances by heart. There is a lot of repetition within the same song.  If you can pick up on the eight moves and remember the sequence of them then you will do fine.  I attribute my years of cheerleading to my success in Zumba.  I learned at an early age to watch someone doing a move and then imitate her.  That is all you need in Zumba, that and a little rhythm.  I felt completely uncoordinated at first, but after a few classes I was able to get a little better.  I also laugh and say that most of the moves are the same ones from the eighties, they have just made them a little cooler.

Never tried Zumba or Cardio-Dance at your gym?  Try it!  You will have so much fun getting your workout in that you won’t believe that the hour is already over.  I have had to find new classes to attend due to my new job, so now I go at night and on Saturdays.  Too much fun!!

My New Job

For the last month or so I have been contemplating getting a part time job.  We could use the money and with Faith in private school, another income would help.  I have been struggling with where I would work.  I am not qualified to do anything but teach, and I don’t want to do that full time.  I even considered working at Trader Joe’s since it is a fun atmosphere and I spend a ton of money there each month anyway.  I really didn’t feel that God was leading me to apply anywhere so I just waited.  I know that the kids have just started school and that I should enjoy the down time that I now have.  Yes, I love going to Zumba twice a week, reading books while I drink a coffee, and grocery shopping alone, but I am actually getting a bit bored.  I feel like I should be doing more with my time.  My life needs a little more purpose than just hanging out, shopping or cleaning the house.  I felt I needed a little job.

At church a few weeks ago my friend, Sara Clark-Long, told me that she had been diagnosed with Non-Hotchkins Lymphoma.  I was stunned.  She is only 45 years old.  The way that she found out about her disease is amazing and a true testimony to her relationship with the Lord.  (I will tell you about that another day.)  Later on that day a brief thought flew through my head, “I wonder who is going to teach Sara’s class at the church preschool?”.  The thought left as quickly as it came and I never thought about it again.  That is, until the Head Master of the school called me the next day and offered me the job.  I told her that I could only teach on Monday, Wednesday and Friday because I already had childcare for two of those days.  She said that I could bring the boys with me on Friday and they could go to school for free that day.  I told her I would seriously consider it, pray about it, and she let me know what it pays.  Later that day I thought of a dollar amount that I would be willing to work for.   Wouldn’t you know it, Wendy offered me that exact amount plus $85 per month!!!  Isn’t God good?!

I have been to work twice this week and it is easy and fun.  I get to socialize with other women for four hours a day.  I already know a few of them and am getting to know a few more.  The kids are great and Sara has trained them well.  Sara was going to start chemo right away, but has decided to wait until the disease progresses a little more.  Right now she feels great and her doctor believes that she should take advantage of that blessing.  So, as it stands, we now have three adults in the two-yea-old classroom.  How easy!!  This job is a true blessing and I am grateful to have it.